The Writing Newbie

Writing is an adventure. Enjoy the journey and write the way you love!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Q&A #2

A while back I was asked the following questions in the comments and I thought it was about time that I answered them. Sorry for taking so long. I hope that the following post will help.

1.       Is it better to try and publish a stand-alone book or could I try with my trilogy?

Let me say first that this is pure guessing and speculation on my end; I am no editor. However you do hear of beginning authors getting two or three book deals.

Good writing = good writing.

 If an agent or publisher likes your writing and your book there should be no reason for them not to publish it. Even if it’s a part one of a series. In fact if they really fancy it they might be happy with more books on their way!

I have heard of authors who in fact got a multiple book deal for a standalone book, and they had to try and make a sequel. So having a series is by no means a handicap.

I imagine though, that if they are a bit more cautious about your novel, that they might offer you a one book deal at first, and another one for more books if the first one appears to be selling well.

For those of you who didn’t know, a book deal means that you can with almost certainty say that one of your books will be published. A two book deal means that you agreed to write two books for one publisher. It creates a sense of security but with most contracts also means that you have to use that Publisher even if a better offer comes along.

However, I can imagine that certain publishers might be more inclined to reject a three book project if they are not completely 100% sure it will sell.

 I think you have to focus on just the first novel in your query and leave the fact that it is a part one till the end, so that they’ll at least read a bit of your writing first. If anyone disagrees or knows more please let us know in the comments!

2.       Will drawings of characters & locations help sell my book to publishers?

I don’t think that publishers care much about the drawings unless you are planning to illustrate your own book. It might come in handy when deciding the cover design or the drawings of the illustrator (if you’re planning on drawings throughout your book) but it should not affect the publisher’s decision.

Though  in a way—yes it does.
Because by drawing the characters and locations they will become more real for YOU. If you draw a map of a place, it will be easier to move your characters around in at and it will prevent mistakes (like things not matching up or changing location etc.). If you draw characters they might come more alive for you, if you really have an image of them to look at.

Whenever I have trouble describing a character I usually draw them so I have a more solid image of what is in my mind. Then I start describing that image (you don’t have to be good at drawing to do this. Just as long as it helps you along).

So in short the pictures themselves probably won’t change the publishers decision (if you’re not an illustrator as well) but can improve your writing and therefore your chances.

3.       How do you come up with good character names?

If you cannot come up with a good name you might need to get to know your character first a bit more. We all know those people with names that just seem to fit their personality completely. It’s like their parents somehow knew.  Well that’s what you need to do!

I like to look at sites like for names to choose from. I also like to carry around a little address book in which I write funny, beautiful or interesting names I come across in everyday life.
For more info on how to name your character please read my previous blog post on the subject! :-)

I hope this post helped some of you out there! I will try to upload a post more frequently. If anyone has more questions or suggestions about posts please email me or leave them in the comments! You’d really be helping me and everyone who reads this blog out!
I won’t be online much the next weeks because I’m going on holiday to Germany! And we probably won’t have any internet there at all.

But please leave a comment anyway and I’ll see you all again soon! Is anyone planning something fun for their summer holiday? Let me know!

And remember to use all these free time to write and have fun!

Keep Writing!

Xx LordKiwii 


  1. Hi im starting to write a book ! my cousin is a book writer but is on vacation!!! So i ask for your help thank you !

  2. Hi Emily,

    That is great! I wish you lots of fun and good luck with writing your book! :)
    You're lucky to have your cousin to ask help from. But let me know if you want to ask for my help as well! ^^
    I hope you enjoy my blog :)